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How to Rebuild Trust


This material is coming from my upcoming book (which should be available as a download from YourMarriageCounselor.com in April 2012.)

Helping Relationships and Marriage Heal From the Trauma ofInfidelity (for the faithful Partner).


Rebuilding Trust


When a partner has been unfaithful, the biggest issue that exists for the person who has been cheated on is the issue of the is trust.  A parent says to their 8 year old child, “trust me, just fall back and ill catch you.” and then the parent moves a way, and the youngster falls on the ground.  That child has learned a difficult lesson; the youngster will have a hard time ever again letting their parent catch them again.

 The really difficult work ahead is to begin to rebuild the trust that has been lost. The first thing to realize is that trust is not given it is  earned.  In order for trust to be rebuilt five things have to occur:

1. The couple must learn to communicate with each other more effectively with each other. Whenever I have counseled the couple who are dealing with Infidelity even before the discovery of the unfaithfulness partners tell me how they are not able to talk to each other.  They spend little time taking with each other.  Sharing concerns both about the relationship and about their lives in general.

 2. The person who has strayed must be consistent . They must do what they say their going to do and be where they say they’re going to be.

 3. The unfaithful partner has to show a regular effort  to be open to their partner.  The unfaithful partner has to let the partner know where they are, to give them access to passwords to phone, computers etc…  This may be difficult for many people, but the other person.  Even the act of giving this level of accountability is reassuring.  Whenever I ask the partner who has been cheated on what is important to them they say; How can I forgive if I can’t know what the other person is doing”. The core issue for the faithful partner is will my partner do this again?

Though being open doesn’t mean the situation can’t be repeated the attitude of openness shows the partner that they have nothing to hide and that is really important.

4.The person who has strayed must be patient and consistent. The person who has cheated must realize that it will take months maybe even a year for thre to be a comfortable level of trust.

 5. Spend time together.  Building trust in a relationship requires time and contact with someone; you can’t trust someone you don’t know.  When you and your partner first met you probably spent a great deal of time together and frequently thought about each other when you were apart.  Eventually though, everyday life takes over and time is spent focusing on jobs, careers, children and hobbies.  Since there was some personal connection that initially drew you together, it is important to rekindle your relationship. 


Trust is earned a little bit at a time

Warm regards,

Dr. Marty


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